A strained neck put Justin Morneau’s comeback season on hold, but the Rockies have activated the first baseman from the disabled list for tonight’s game against the Cubs.
Morneau narrowly missed making the All-Star team as a “Final Vote” candidate, participated in the Home Run Derby in his former home ballpark in Minnesota, and hit .312 with 13 homers and an .846 OPS in 89 games before the injury.
Even with the DL stint Morneau has already played more games than he did in 2010 or 2011 and this is his highest OPS since 2010, when a concussion ended his season in July and derailed the former MVP’s career.
Update (8:40 PM ET): Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that Hunter’s contract with the Phillies is for two years.
There’s been a bit of confusion at the Winter Meetings. First, ESPN’s Buster Olney reported that the Phillies were close to signing free agent reliever Addison Reed. That report was then disputed by Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports. Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer then reported that not only do the Phillies not have a deal with Reed, they’re actually moving in on a deal with free agent pitcher Tommy Hunter. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic backed up Gelb’s report, as did Todd Zolecki of MLB.com.
Hunter, 31, spent the past season with the Rays, posting a 2.61 ERA with a 64/14 K/BB ratio across 58 2/3 innings. The right-hander, a veteran of 10 seasons in the majors, should be a good addition to the Phillies’ bullpen, which also recently added Pat Neshek. Neshek and Hunter will likely work the innings just ahead of closer Hector Neris.
As for Reed, well, who knows.